When you bow at the close of an aikido lesson do you worship or just show honour to a person or philosophy which improves self esteem?
I feel it meant to much when I bowed and had to pray later because of it concerning it.
There are Biblical examples of this such as when Namaan the Syrian who asked a prophet for permission to bow with the others to a false God. And there were many examples with Jesus. Early christians chose death instead of calling the Emperor lord...
What's it to you fellows? How do you deal with it according to your conscience and faith?
My dojo makes no mention of worship. For me, bowing in Aikido is no different than bowing in Karate. It's a small piece of the culture that originated those two MA being kept alive; paying respect Taking it a step further; I bow to senior students, instructors, and head instructor. I bow when I walk into the Dojo. I bow when I step on and off the mat. We don't think twice about that; bowing to O'Sensei is no different. For me, it doesn't go any further than that.
In the military, I call every officer Sir or Ma'am depending on gender, and I pop a salute whenever I'm in uniform and I see one outdoors; for us it is called Customs and Courtesies.
Hope that makes sense.